Perspectives

Problem Solving

Problem Solving My daughter, Larisa became a swimmer when she was just 12 years old. She joined a year-round swim team and later went on to compete in college. As a swim Mom, they never tell you how much a parent is required to do to support a swim team. Although volunteering never seemed a burden to me, there was one annual event that was incredibly challenging. Larisa’s team practiced in an outdoor pool until late fall when it became too cold to do so. Then the pool would need an inflatable pool enclosure or “bubble” so those swimmers could swim all through the winter and early spring when the apparatus would be taken down. However, erecting this mammoth bubble was an extreme undertaking. I remember arriving early on a Saturday morning with several other parents and the Coach. I assumed this would be a couple of hours of sweaty…
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On Love and Leading

     You have not heard from me in a few weeks in part, because I elected to have some surgery done on my right foot. The ensuing weeks have involved managing a good amount of pain while trying to work, being unable to drive, and being totally housebound. Initially, I had to stay off my foot, maneuver with crutches and rely on others for nearly every need including driving me to errands and appointments. My wonderful husband, Reed, cheerfully bore the brunt of this effort. A couple of days after the surgery however, he had to travel out of town for several days. It was my incredibly kind neighbors who stepped up to help me. Melissa brought me homemade soup and warm bread and Tammy helped me escape the cabin fever and took me to dinner.  The caring, loving actions of my husband and my neighbors demonstrate a fundamental…
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Do The Right Thing

Do the Right Thing As we begin a new year, it is healthy to look at the year in review and determine how me might improve. I believe assessing our personal integrity is a great way to begin personal reflection. As leaders our personal integrity is the foundation from which we build trust with those we hope to lead and influence. Trust will be eroded by a leader who embodies “Do what I say, not what I do.” And it is always more difficult to rebuild trust after it has been broken. With this in mind, let me share some lessons in doing the right thing that I learned at West Point. The idea of personal integrity was ingrained from the first moment I stepped off the bus and walked through the walls of gray at West Point. Early on, cadets are introduced to the Cadet Honor Code. The code…
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Camaraderie

From the moment I arrived at West Point for “R-Day,” (or Reception Day), as a New Cadet, I became part of a team. I was assigned to a squad, a platoon and a company. The concept of relying on our classmates was embedded in our training day one, and it was how we were ultimately able to succeed. Initially, we learned to work with our roommate. Our roommate helped with everything from assisting us to memorize the reams of required fourth class knowledge, keeping the room in accordance with regulations and checking off our uniforms prior to leaving the room. By working together, we might avoid undue “attention” from Upperclassmen. Cadets don several different uniforms at the Academy, and attention to detail was paramount. As New Cadets, we learned how to polish belt buckles and shoes. Often a squad member or roommate would have mastered this skill better than others…
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Why West Point Woman?

Why West Point Woman?

“What prompted you to write your book?” I am often asked this question, whether in an interview or from a new reader. And as a natural storyteller, I typically answer with a tale.
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